Orange County Essentials

Essentials

in Orange County

With sun and beaches, Orange County isn’t all that different from Los Angeles. However, the OC is a little more laid back, with less hustle and bustle and more feel and flow. What makes Orange County unique is that it’s, well, a county, which means it’s a collection of cities, each with its own personality. And Hyatt hotels knows them all.

Events in Orange County

Newport Beach Film Festival

April

4540 Campus Drive

Newport Beach, CA

+1 949 253 2880

With anniversary screenings like Sunset Boulevard and premiere showings of films like Crash, this film fest brings big name celebs to the Orange County shores.

Carnaval Primavera

April

Huntington Beach, CA

+1 323 585 1155

A great sign that Spring has arrived, this Mardi Gras festival features food from all over the world.  Pacific Boulevard is lined with street vendors, art, and a wide range of entertainment. 

US Open of Surfing

August

Huntington Beach, CA

+1 424 653 1900

This week-long competition held in Huntington Beach showcases the nation’s top surfing talents, competing to one day become recognized on the Surfer Walk of Fame across the street.

New World Flamenco Festival

August

Irvine Barclay Center, 4242 Campus Drive

Irvine, CA

+1 949 854 4646

This festival celebrates the traditions and the new directions of gypsy Flamenco through song, music and dance that exhibit the passion for which the style is known.

Orange International Street Fair

September

On Glasell Street and Chapman Avenue

Orange, CA

+1 714 633 4816

You don’t need to leave the California weather to discover the world. Hang out in the sun and sample international cuisines from Onari sushi to Italian sausages, then take in a concert.

Newport Beach Christmas Light Boat Parade

December

Collins Island

Newport Beach, CA

+1 949 675 0551

Although there’s no snow in California, this parade is still one of the top Christmas celebrations in the US, as more than 100 lighted boats float through the waterways of Newport Beach.

Essentials

With more than three million people, Orange County is second only to Los Angeles County in terms of population. At 948 square miles, Orange County is also the smallest county in California. It’s even smaller if you consider that 156 square miles of the county is water. Don’t forget the beaches; there’s 43 miles of shoreline. The icing on the cake: the average year-round temperature is 68 degrees.

A total of 34 incorporated cities comprise Orange County, but that doesn’t mean you need to see them all. Anaheim is the tourist capitol, largely due to Disneyland. Irvine is a business and financial hub and Huntington Beach is “Surf City, USA.” Beyond those cities, though, are some hidden jewels. Laguna Beach is a quiet town with plenty of beach front beauty to dazzle your eyes and little shops and restaurants to occupy your time. Santa Ana may be the county seat, but you won’t be sitting down much with its share of shopping, arts and events. And Newport Beach is where the yachts roll in with the tide and the upscale go to relax.

As you roam through Orange County, there’s a chance you’ll be overcome by a chilled-out attitude. Still, a pair of sunglasses and sunscreen simply won’t be enough. You’ll need casual style, something that glitters and shines, and a touch of wanderlust.  

Resources

Coast Magazine
Your guide to dining, style, events and all things Orange County with a glamorous edge.

Orange County Register
The local paper that gives you the information you need to explore Orange County.

Orange County Visitors Center
If you’re a visitor to Orange County, go here for the lowdown on the local fun.

OC Weekly
An off-beat publication that isn’t afraid to cut through the hype and tell you the real deal.

Laguna Beach Visitors Center
Head south, down the coast, and this visitors center will be happy to tell you where to go in Laguna Beach.

Newport Beach Visitors Center
Stop by the visitors center to pinpoint your favorites in Newport Beach.

Getting Around Orange County

John Wayne Orange County Airport (SNA)
John Wayne Airport is located in the heart of Orange County, making it easy to go wherever you need in the OC.

LA International Airport (LAX)
The primary international gateway into Southern California is located 35 miles from Orange County.

Amtrak
Taking a train isn’t only a scenic alternative, but helps you to avoid all that highway traffic.

Rental Cars
The most convenient way to get around Orange County, rental cars can be found at the airport or with a little help from Hyatt Concierge.

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